Sunday, April 17, 2005

Trivializing Rape
from the mind of  Zeke_Wilkins.

This past week's edition of The Mast, Pacific Lutheran University's student newspaper, has several articles on rape and sexual assault. The amount of outright falsehoods was staggering. It would have been entertaining if it did not trivialize such a horrific act. For the record, I define rape much like the State of Washington does, as forcible sexual intercourse (penetration) without consent. Let it also be known that I would support making rape a capital crime. However, if the politically correct mob had its way, just about anything offensive with even a hint of sexuality would be redefined as rape. Don't believe me? How about these interesting quotes:

"Before... I would have imagined a big guy penetrating a woman who tries to fight back... Now I see it as any unwanted sexual contact." - Kevin Murphy

"It is not empowering to think it's not rape because it doesn't involve penetration... it is more empowering to define rape as sexual assault of any kind." - Bobbi Hughes

So first off, notice we're talking about this "empowerment" nonsense again. If a woman wants to feel empowered, I suggest she buy a firearm and take the time to learn how to handle it proficiently. Second, according the the above definitions unwanted yet benign things such as unwanted handholding, backrubs, accidental brushes and the like would be rape since they could be construed as "unwanted sexual contact".

All this talk of "redefining rape" and "empowerment" has the effect of trivializing the suffering of women who really have been violently attacked and violated. Let's not mince words: going to a party, having to much to drink, bedding a stranger and then waking up the next morning with regret does not constitute rape! Neither does prank calls of a sexual nature, unwanted touching, or repeated requests for dates or sex. The previous behaviors can range from mildly irritating to assault, but don't play down the horrific experiences of women who truly have been raped, just so irresponsible coeds can feel empowered.

To bolster their position, the PC brigade continues to resort to made-up statistics. In one of the commentaries we are informed:

"One in four college women is a victim of rape during her college career."

Damn, that's a lot of raping going on. They used to tell us "one in for women is raped in her lifetime." Now it seems the percentage is higher, or all that raping is taking place at college. Parents, don't let your daughters receive a college education!

Because I was curious, I took a look at the crime statistics for PLU (which they are required by law to publish). For the years 2001-2003 there were no cases of "non-forcible sexual offenses" and six cases of "forcible sex offenses"; three on campus, three off.

Now, for there to be a one-in-four chance of a woman being raped during her college career, it would mean that during the average year one-sixteenth of the female student body would be raped (I'm assuming four years for a degree, random raping, no repeats). The article points out that rape is underreported at a rate of 16-23% of all rapes. For the sake of argument, let's assume that at PLU rape is reported only 16% of the time. So rounding up, at PLU there is an average of 13 rapes a year. The full-time female student population of PLU is roughly 1840. So the percentage of female students raped each year, using the figures friendliest to the PC argument, is 0.7%, not the 6.25% the doomsayers report. And remember, we're assuming that rape is underreported at PLU, an assumption hard to prove. If we just take the average of 2 rapes a year, we get a rate of 0.1%.

While all the math above is entertaining, it is not the main point. It should be obvious to everyone that the one-in-four figure is completely bogus. If it were true there would be an epidemic of rape, with as Bernard Goldberg puts it, "long lines of ambulances lining up at colleges and universities across the country ready to transport the victims to nearby hospitals."

Again, all the doom and gloom and inflating of dubious rape statistics takes away from the seriousness of real rape and ultimately desensitizes our culture to it. If those who want to redefine rape to mean anything succeed, it will cease to mean something.


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